Overview

Ben Blair advocates for clients ranging from startups to Fortune 500 corporations in cases involving state and local taxes. Ben combines substantial trial and appellate experience with deep knowledge of the tax laws in representing clients nationwide across numerous industries, including gaming and hospitality, retail, real estate, high-tech and heavy manufacturing, and logistics.

An avid speaker and author on tax issues, Ben is the legal columnist for The Appraisal Journal and a contributor to the TaxHatchet blog. Ben also served as a regional co-editor of the American Bar Association's Property Tax Deskbook, 19th and 20th eds., and a chapter author for the upcoming Guide to Multijurisdictional Admission to Practice Requirements for State and Local Tax Lawyers, 2nd ed.

Property Taxation

Ben leverages his litigation experience and valuation training to help taxpayers reduce the property tax burden on their investments across the United States. He applies and can explain innovative appraisal and valuation techniques, and he collaborates with market participants, including national developers, real estate investment trusts and appraisers, to understand trends in the real estate market and clients’ businesses.

State and Local Taxation

Ben counsels clients through complex controversies involving state and local tax agencies, including advocacy from administrative appeals to trial and appellate courts. He works with taxpayers on income, sales and use and unemployment tax matters, as well as unclaimed property disputes, and advises clients on the state and local tax implications of corporate transactions and reorganizations.

Past Experience

During law school, Ben worked for the Indiana Department of Workforce Development, the state agency that administers the unemployment tax system. While pursuing his bachelor's degree in Financial Information Systems, Ben spent two years working in finance for a division of Emerson Electric Co.

Faculty Positions

  • Indiana University Kelley School of Business - Bloomington — Guest Lecturer, State and Local Taxation I, Spring 2017
  • Indiana University Maurer School of Law — Adjunct Professor, State and Local Taxation, Fall 2016, Fall 2019

Credentials

Bar Admissions

Indiana

Court Admissions

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana

Education

Indiana University Maurer School of Law
J.D. (2010)

Indiana University
B.S. in Business, with highest distinction (2006)

Insights & Events

Other Perspectives
  • Cases in Brief: Recent Court Decisions on Real Estate and Valuation
    The Appraisal Journal, Vol. 87 No. 4, Fall 2019
  • What Appraisers Need to Know about the Final IRS Regulations on Substantiation of Noncash Charitable Deduction
    The Appraisal Journal, Vol. 86 No. 4 (Fall 2018)
  • Indiana Tax Update
    Co-presenter with Daniel R. Roy, Indiana CPA Society, November 2018
  • The State of State Tax in 2018: Indiana & Beyond
    Co-presenter with Daniel R. Roy, Indiana CPA Society, November 2018
  • Building and Presenting a Persuasive Case
    Co-presenter, Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum Advanced Property Tax Seminar, West Baden, July 2018
  • Legislative Responses to Property Tax Issues
    Co-presenter, Institute for Professionals in Taxation Annual Conference, Vancouver, British Columbia, June 2018
  • Property Tax Roundtable: Retail
    Panelist, Institute for Professionals in Taxation Annual Conference, Vancouver, British Columbia, June 2018
  • Business Law Boot Camp: Understanding Sales and Use Tax
    National Business Institute Seminar, September 2017
  • Unemployment Tax Enforcement: Beyond SUTA Dumping
    Indiana Tax Conference, Indiana Chamber of Commerce, August 2017
  • Delaware Court Unlocks Opportunities to Reduce Property Tax Burden
    Northeast Real Estate Business, August 2017
  • Gaming and Gambling Law in Indiana and Across the U.S.
    National Business Institute Seminar, June 2017
  • Add Value Through Correct Valuation
    Student Housing Business Online, April 25, 2017
  • Partially Built Properties Raise Property Tax Issues
    Co-author with Stephen Paul, Real Estate Forum, February/March 2016
  • The Taxing Life of Professional Athletes
    Indianapolis Bar Association, November 2016
  • Property Tax Issues for Construction Work in Progress
    Co-presenter, Strafford Publications Webinar, September 2016
  • Discussion of State Tax Cases, Issues and Policy Matters
    Co-presenter, COST (Council on State Taxation) Midwest Regional State Tax Seminar, November 2015
  • Top 10 Indiana Tax Developments for Manufacturers
    Co-presenter with Brent Auberry, Indiana Tax Conference, Indiana Chamber of Commerce, Indianapolis, August 2015
  • Retail Property Tax Valuation Debate Heats Up in Hoosier State
    Co-author with Stephen Paul, Real Estate Forum, June 2015
  • Weigh Anchor Inducements to Sink Property Tax Bills
    Co-author with Stephen Paul, Shopping Center Business, June 2015
  • Gaming in the Midwest: Legal and Regulatory Update
    Panelist, Midwest Gaming Summit, June 2014
  • Internet Gaming: Devising Models for Sharing Tax Revenue Between the States
    Panelist, World Regulatory Briefing USA, October 2013
  • Personal Property Tax: Recent Developments, Issues and Pointers
    Co-presenter with Francina A. Dlouhy, Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum, March 2013
  • Taxes and the Wild, Wild Web
    Co-presenter with Brent A. Auberry, Indiana Chamber of Commerce, October 2012
  • Disparate Treatment Under City's Assessment Forgiveness Plan Is Ruled Constitutional
    Co-author with Stephen H. Paul, IPT Tax Report, July 2012
  • How to Keep State Taxes From Giving You a F.I.T.
    Co-author with Francina A. Dlouhy, Scotsman Guide, July 2011

Leadership & Community

Professional Associations

  • Appraisal Institute  Associate Member
  • Law360 — Tax Authority State & Local Editorial Advisory Board, 2019 
  • Indianapolis Bar Association — Tax Section, Executive Committee, 2014-present (Chair, 2019)
  • Urban Land Institute (ULI) — Young Leaders Group

Civic Activities

  • Indianapolis Opera — Board of Directors, 2016-19 (Asst. Secretary, 2017-19)
  • Our Shepherd Lutheran Church — Board of Elders, 2012-16

Honors

  • Indiana Lawyer — Leadership in Law Awards, Up and Coming Lawyer, 2019
  • Faegre Baker Daniels — Pro Bono Honor Roll, 2013-15
  • Indiana University Maurer School of Law — 2016 Practitioner-in-Residence, Tax
  • Beta Gamma Sigma International Business Honor Society
  • Sherman Minton Moot Court Competition
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